Friday, September 18, 2009

Health UN-Fair

Man this has been the week from HELL. My daughter is painfully sick with Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. Her mouth is just chock full of big sores that keep her from eating/sleeping and doing anything without whining... "OWIE!"

My nerves are shot, I haven't eaten anything decent or balanced in over a week. I think I'm getting sick myself... Man, being a mom is not for the faint-of-heart. Ok, that was just my little prequel here. Bad week, exhausted, fried. And not the good kind of fried where there is oil. :(

Anyway, as the title alluded to, my work had it's annual health fair this week. To try and encourage everyone to go and participate, they offer prizes if you go to every single booth. This year I was going to try and do it. Participating in the wellness program at work has been pretty good for me, I'm thinking about what I do more, and what I'm eating. Hell, its what got me started writing this blog... a sort of journey journal. :)

I've never gone to every booth before, though this is my third health fair at this company, so I've never been eligible for a prize. I always avoided one booth. The evil booth.

Body fat analysis. Yeah. Fun.

The other booths don't scare me nearly as bad as this one. Cholesterol, check! (160... that's pretty damn fantastic for being 360 lbs eh?) Blood sugar? double check! (79.... that's way at the low end of good, and diabetes runs in my family... so extra good!) Blood pressure? Meh... (138/94... but I do get white coat. If a nurse I Like/know takes it its usually about 130/85ish)

Vision was perfect, stress levels, extraordinarily high, but that's pretty par for me right now... stressful life.

But that damn fat composition booth mocked me. I looked down at my card, every box checked except for that one. No one was around to hear the guy yell out what a fatty I am... so I went for it. Screw it, I thought, I know I'm fat, he knows I'm fat... why not?

I hold onto the little thing, kind of looks like a steering wheel. He enters my height and weight (blush) and beep. It pops up. 47%.

Actually... I was a little happy. I thought it'd be worse really... as much as I weigh I though it'd be 50+. Optimal for a woman is 18-30%. So I'm up there. He talked on and on about how this increases my risk for high cholesterol (hmmm not yet...) diabetes (looking good...) and high blood pressure (my one concern in the near future) and yadda yadda.

Then he says something I've never heard a health professional tell me. He said my optimal weight may be (gasp) about 250 pounds. Because of the percentage at 350, at 250 (mind that's 100 FREAKING pounds) I'd be in great shape. "Most women wouldn't say YAY I'm 250, but for you that could be a great goal." Wow, I actually got a health professional to admit that perhaps, for my height and bone structure that the "optimal" weight of 170 might not be ideal.

So, although I had to sit through a lecture of why I'm going to die because I'm fat/lazy... I also got that great bit of support.

All in all, I think I had a pretty good time. I do often feel like the second these nurses look at me they see a big greasy, cholesterol ridden, diabetes-doomed person... and I don't feel that way at all. Obviously I'm doing good for now, trying to be better... how do you show that to people?

I guess you can't. You just have to let them judge you on your looks.

Comment time! Do you feel like when you deal with health professionals, they are quick to assume that you are unhealthy, because of your size/body? Do you think that thinner people, though plagued with some of the same ailments, are more likely "innocent until proven guilty," while chubbier gals get the immediate diagnosis?


Patty (Tales of a Plus Size Pregnancy) said...

Yes, I think I am prejudged beforehand by the nurses or doctor before they get the facts on my health. In fact, I had one doctor tell me that he was shocked at the great health I was in despite my size. I was the healthiest fat person he ever treated. That was a little strange, but felt good to hear.

I haven't had an obesity related illness or have been borderline for anything yet and I keep getting bigger. I hope to start shrinking after the baby in the new year.

PS - Awesome news on being in a healthy range at 250... That is pretty surprising to hear from a healthcare provider, and awesome they recognzied that!

Amanda aka SuperPucky said...

Comming from a former 350 myself, yes I used to get "the look" from nurses and Dr.'s. I kept shopping until I found a Dr. that was on my team and saw more than a fat girl sitting in front of him. My OB, my Doc and his staff have cheered me to 60 pounds smaller. It can be done, even if it takes a minor miracle. Don't let the health fair get you down. Just think of it as a starting point.